WATCH: ‘American Idol’ star Syesha Mercado discusses combat to regain custody of her 2 youngsters
American Idol star Syesha Mercado, her partner, Tyron Deneer, held a virtual press conference Tuesday as they battled to regain custody of their two children.
The couple’s 18-month-old son, Amen’Ra Sba, was removed from their care after a hospital visit in August. Her newborn daughter was removed from her care at a traffic stop in Manatee County last week.
Mercado and Deneer said their 18-month-old son was removed from their care in March after they took him to the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg for treatment for dehydration.
“I’m a pregnant, nursing mom who went to the hospital to get my sun, Amen’Ra, some ‘fluids” as she transitioned from prolonged breastfeeding to bottle feeding,” Mercado wrote on a GoFundMe fundraiser page for the couple.
We Have the Right to Be Right, an advocacy group that supports Mercado, claims their son was owned by Dr. Sally Smith, a pediatrician, has been examined. Smith denies the allegations.
After the hospital visit, Amen’Ra was placed in the care of the Manatee Child Protection Service.
The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office told NBC News that it had received a notice from the hospital’s child abuse center alleging the child was “severely malnourished.” Mercado said she was also accused of refusing her son a B12 injection, which the hospital recommended.
“Amen’Ra was forcibly and legally abducted from us by CPS who claimed we refused a life and death B12 injection, which is an outright lie. We never turned down a B12 injection, and at no point was he on the verge of death, ”wrote Mercado.
“My family and I are just one of myriad other stories of legal kidnappings that go unheard and unseen,” she said.
On Wednesday, the couple’s newborn daughter was taken from them at a surprise roadside social check in Manatee County. The couple recorded the incident on a video posted on social media. The video had more than 3 million views on Tuesday morning.
“Don’t you feel anything? Guys i’m human This is my baby. My babies are days old – and you are taking my baby away from me, ”you hear Mercado say.
Syesha, Tyron and their advocacy team will hold a press conference Tuesday at 10 a.m. to keep up to date on their case.
This story evolves and is updated.